Advantages and Disadvantages of Using a Water Filtration System

Written by Henry Young. Posted in Food & Drink, Health & Fitness

More and more people are starting to be interested in having a water filtration system for the home; although municipal authorities are usually in charge with making sure the water that reaches us is safe for consumption, it is sometimes out of their reach to control other factors that can pollute the water. Moreover, a system for filtering the water is also necessary for those who draw water from their own wells; these have to be tested, and based on the chemical results, determined what kind of filtration is required. But are there also disadvantages to using a water filter system? There are some, depending on the situation and the type of system. Below you can find the most important advantages and disadvantages of using a water filtration system.

The Advantages of Filtration

These are mostly known and even self-referencing; the most common contamination issues come from excess chlorine and chloramide that authorities pour into the water in order to destroy bacteria and microorganisms, or reduce the hardness of water. The simplest water filter system will eliminate these two contaminants from the water, thus reducing unpleasant taste, strange coloration and odors. The next danger is posed by microorganisms which can thrive in a certain type of water; these range from giardia to cryptosporidicum, viruses, and other bacteria that can make humans seriously ill in extreme situations. In countries where malaria or cholera are still problematic, they are mostly related to the area’s lack of fresh, clean sources of water.

Other more insidious contaminants can make their way into our water, especially depending on the city’s water source; a lot of industrial and chemical plants are not well regulated, so they spill their waste in the nearest body of water. This means that traces of metal, industrial chemical waste, VOCs and other incredibly dangerous substances can dilute in the water. Sometimes, it is merely a matter of poorly maintained water pipes, which allows rust or other metals to end up in our glasses and our foods. But these contaminants can also affect our health when we use the water for showering and bathing, and enter our system through the skin; they also affect pets and household plants, and lead to a quicker corrosion and damage of water fixtures.

All these problems can be solved with a good and performing water filtration system; depending on the gravity of the matter, you can purchase a filter that caters to your specific needs. There are carafe, on-faucet and under-the-sink water filter systems which eliminate the more common problems, providing safe water for consumption, or whole house water filtration systems that trap even the most insidious contaminants and make all water sources in your home safe for all purposes. Another advantage that these systems bring is that they become cost-efficient in time; if you are already aware of the poor quality of the water in your home and only consume bottled water for drinking and cooking, then you are probably wasting a lot of time with supermarket trips, spending a lot of money on gas, and on bottled water, which is not always as mineral or as pure as they advertise, and which does nothing more than encourage the plastic industry – another side of our evolution that affects the integrity and balance of nature and water sources. When considering various filtration solutions, our advice would be to go for the best whole house water filtration system. This way, you will invest more money at first, but in the long run, you will end up saving money and you won;t even have to worry about the system’s maintenance as it is pretty stress-free.

The Disadvantages of Filtration

First of all, most efficient water filtration systems require a high initial cost; whole house water filter systems in particular are very costly – you pay for the product, for the professional installation, for adapting your home, and for the maintenance of these systems, which include cleaning and replacing filters when they expire. Some systems have automated a self-cleaning option, but you never know how efficient they are; other systems visually and aurally notify you when it’s time to replace the filters, but with other models, you may simply have to remember that this filter has a certain lifetime, and that filter another lifetime before becoming unsafe. In instances where you have to clean the filter manually, you have to rely on your own common sense when deciding what is clean and what isn’t. As we said, it is always better to go for the best whole house water filtration system as it can save you a lot of worries unlike cheaper alternatives which will put a smaller hole in your pocket yet they will come with stress and worries.

Another risk is that these filters are not tested by any governmental organization, so there is little known about any side effects in the long term; a solution to that is to find products that have been tested by non-governmental organizations like the NSF (National Sanitation Foundation), and which receive a seal of approval if deemed safe. There is also an ambiguous situation with reverse-osmosis water filters, which present several problems; one of them is that they can demineralize water, meaning they deplete it of those minerals which are essential for our health. Although it is generally said water is tasteless, the truth is quite different; water must have taste, and that taste is given by the minerals in it, which balance our organisms. The next disadvantage posed by reverse osmosis is that a side-effect of demineralized water is that it becomes acidic; this can imbalance blood pH levels, and recent studies have shown that in such a situation, the body releases calcium from the teeth and bones in order to counteract the acidity, which in turn leaves us even more depleted of the minerals and vitamins we need. Finally, reverse osmosis does not eliminate all the contaminants that are found in water, including both common and common substances as those mentioned in the first part of the article.

As you can see, deciding whether you need a water filtration system is ultimately up to each individual; if you find the water in your home is too contaminated, you have to take measures, but make sure you learn all about these systems, and about the model you purchase in particular. Otherwise, it will be difficult to determine if you’ve made the right choice, so you have to put everything in balance and see what’s the best solution for you.